Aug 24, 2005

The Ultimate Portfolio

You’ve done all the hard work and got plenty to show for it, but what’s the best way to show off your talents? Mark Ramshaw talks to the masters of folio presentation about building an online gallery.

Source: computer arts
Written By Mark Ramshaw

Image is everything, at least in the world of advertising. Not that many designers consider themselves to be directly involved with advertising work, not even those who work chiefly for marketing executives. But advertising is fundamental to the success of any designer – nobody is going to hire someone they haven’t heard of. As Jim Coudal of creative studio Coudal Partners says: “As a designer, you need to look at yourself as a product.”

Advertising takes many forms. At the most subtle level it’s viral, with word of mouth bringing in new work. But for lesser established freelance artists and design studios working in illustration, web design, 3D, or in fact any artistic discipline, it takes a little more to get people beating a path to their door. The key tool for active self-promotion is the internet, where a website can provide visitors with instant access to a digital portfolio.

When used in conjunction with links elsewhere on the web (typically on forums and other designers’ websites), an online gallery helps to reel in clients that may never have heard of you otherwise. And it works equally well as a stop-off point for potential clients who get in touch via other means, giving them an instant insight into what has been achieved when working on previous designs and commercial projects.

“It’s now mandatory to have a website where you can showcase your work,” says Don Clark at Asterik Studio. “We have many different people visiting our site daily, from students and aspiring designers to art directors. It’s an important tool for us and one that we update as often as possible.”

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